With Durga Puja round the corner and heralding the festival season, the Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) on Sunday issued fresh guidelines for holding gatherings, with strict adherence to Covid-19 protocols. These guidelines are significant, given the staging of Ramleelas, that witness mass gatherings, starts around the same time. All organisers will now have to obtain permission from District Magistrates for organising events apart from other required permissions, said Delhi Chief Secretary and DDMA's Executive Committee Chairman Vijay Dev.
The DDMA has withdrawn its earlier order banning gatherings, but only till October 31 in view of the festivities.
"Each such permission (which is applied for to District Magistrate concerned) shall be jointly granted by District Magistrate and District DCP concerned on the basis of joint inspection report of area Executive Magistrate, area SHO and Licensing Inspector of Municipal Corporation concerned which shall clearly certify that the festival/celebration site is suitable for the conduct of the event and meets all the stipulations laid down in this order and the standard operating procedure," the order said.
Nodal officers will also be appointed for each venue of Ramleela, or, for that matter, a Durga Puja pandal, stated the order.
The order also stipulates separate entry and exit at every event site, crowd regulation in terms of allowing only people with face mask, among other measures.
In closed venues, upto 50 per cent of the hall capacity is allowed, which should not cross 200, while in open areas, the size of the ground and the Union Home Ministry's SOP will determine the numbers of individuals.
Meanwhile, the District Magistrate and the DCP concerned need to certify the capacity, the order held.
These measures are being taken in view of the raging pandemic while considering people's sensitivities towards the festivals. The order clearly states that organisers violating the stipulations will be penalised.